Coffee & Contemplation: The Beginning

I am adding a couple new things to my blog. For you poetry lovers, I’ll soon start Twofer Tuesdays, where I post two poems in one post every Tuesday. Twice the poetry you get on Mondays. I have not decided if I want to bring back Hump Day Haikus. Currently, I just have not written enough haikus to make that a weekly consistent thing. Maybe I can do something once a month. For now, the only poetry item I’m adding is Twofer Tuesdays. If that’s not enough poetry, you can subscribe to my Patreon for $1 per month to gain access to my unpublished poetry before anyone else.

The other item I’m adding to my blog is posts like this one. Coffee and contemplation involves me writing out my thoughts while drinking coffee. Topics are only limited to things I think about. I may rant about society. I may tell you my favorite things. I may word vomit nonsense into the post and have no real agenda or purpose with the post. I’m trying to get myself to write more on my blog in between writing fiction and poetry. If you want to see more writing, tell people about my blog and my books. If enough people buy my books and subscribe to my Patreon account, I’ll make enough money to write full time. That’s the dream anyway.

My next book comes out September 19. You can pre-order The Morbid Museum on Amazon Kindle. Amazon does not offer pre-odering of paperbacks, but you can pre-order a signed copy of the paperback in my Shop. Visit the shop for more details. I also have a few events coming in October and November. I’ll provide more details once I have them. Until then, the best thing you all can do is share and comment. Tell your friends about me. If you’d like an advanced copy of my forthcoming book, I’ll email you a digital copy in exchange for an honest review. Reviews are what help writers succeed. Fill out the Contact Form if you’re interested. Happy reading.

Summers in Alaska

Photo by Errin Casano on Pexels.com

I did a crazy thing for the Summer. A friend of mine I’ve known for almost 20 years bought a business. It’s a homemade ice cream shop. She asked me if I wanted to help out and offered to bring me on as a manager. I’ve worked in the service industry for about 12 years, so I felt qualified for this position. I accepted. I left Tucson, Arizona on May 1stand arrived in Fairbanks, Alaska that night. The exciting part was the ten-hour layover in Seattle, Washington. If you have the option to fly stand by, I would not do it unless you were not in a hurry.

Alaska will be nowhere near as hot as Tucson, but the Sun never really sets. It’s always daylight. There’s a bit of Twilight for about 45 minutes around midnight. Otherwise the Sun is out. I haven’t seen the moon since I got here. Another fun fact, the mosquitos here are bigger than average. I wouldn’t call them huge, but they’re everywhere. I’ll survive. I’m working so much that any bites I get I usually forget about. That’s the only downside so far. I’m sure my opinion will change later.

Now I manage an ice cream shop. I’ve learned how to properly dip and scoop ice cream like the pros. I hope to learn how to make the ice cream before the Summer’s over. There are lots of flavors and lots of combinations of flavors. I’m having fun, but every now and then we have small issues. I don’t mind dealing with issues, but they all happen in one day. Some days are more stressful than others. As the opening manager, I only deal with issues for a couple hours. The first half of my day is spent getting the shop ready to open. It gets busy after I leave. That makes me happy.

The space is small so once a crowd of people are there filling orders, I immediately want to leave. I don’t like being around a lot of people in a small space especially if I don’t know them well. It will get easier. I’m still having fun and that’s what’s important. Alaska is a beautiful place and the population of the whole state is less than the population of Tucson alone. I enjoy the small-town vibe. Unfortunately, I’m staying with my friend and her family and they live outside of town meaning everything is far away.

I’m only here until September. This should be an easier Summer. It’s not the first time I’ve been away from home for a Summer. Several years ago, I enlisted in the Arizona Army National Guard and went to Basic Combat Training and Advanced Individual Training from April to September. This feels similar. At least the being away from home part. I don’t know if I’ll return next Summer. That depends how the rest of this adventure goes. I think I’ll have a good time, but I may not want to come back every year. That’s a bit much.

Breaking from the Social Media Madness

Toward the end of January, I went hard with social media posting. I posted something every day and I checked notifications constantly. I think this took a toll on me. All that extra noise on top of already feeling depressed and people started telling me that I always say something that rubs people the wrong way. It makes me wonder if everyone I’ve met has felt this way and perhaps that is why I have difficulty maintaining relationships of all kinds. Have people only put up with me to avoid further conflict?

All this added up to needing a break from many things. I spent a day at home, signed out of and deleted social media apps, and spent the whole day in my pajamas. I think some would call this a recovery day. I think it helped. I have a refueled ambition for my blog but also for how to move forward with social media in regard to my writing. Within 24 hours of hitting my lowest point in a long time, I have bounced back to at least a slightly functional human. I have a list of tasks I need to complete, but I’m uncertain how to move forward with personal relationships.

This has always been something I’ve struggled with and when I think I’ve improved, I find more obstacles. It’s a never-ending battle and sometimes I wish I didn’t have to hold a job and could just write every day and make enough income to survive. I’m taking steps to move my life in that direction, and it will be years before that is my sole source of income. I have an appointment scheduled with a psychiatrist and hopefully from that first session I can get a plan of action. I’m giving myself a year to work on many things.

There are many factors I have no control over, and these are the things I think I struggle with the most. There is only so much I can do about my financial situation and stabilizing that holds the biggest uncertainty. Almost half of this past year I was unemployed, and many other things caused it to be potentially the worst year in my recent life. I think that’s why I’ve hit such a low point and can’t find any resolution. So, I do the only thing I know how to do. I bury myself in my work and avoid all humans. Sometimes that’s what I must do to survive.